Pupil Prime Minister - Lit Film Fest

London's first major film festival for primary children – LitFilmFest – has gone UK-wide

“My name is Benaza,” the excited young primary pupil announced to me apropos of nothing other than I had a camera around my neck and a notebook in my hand — a media person obviously.

But it seemed only natural as the children thronging into London's Odeon BFI IMAX cinema — an astonishing 1,500 in just one summer day in 2017 — were all stars attending their very own 'Oscars', the LitFilmFest. And now the project is unrolling across the UK with more than 250,000 7 to 11-year-olds taking part this year.

Edtech 50 2018 attendees

Plenty to celebrate at Edtech 50 2018, but disbelief at education secretary Damien Hinds' 'support'

At a time of shrinking school budgets, and following a decade of government neglect of ICT, the UK's educational technology community -– teachers, developers and suppliers of digital services and products – has needed something to celebrate.

The Edtech 50 2018 event, held at the House of Lords last week, provided just that opportunity. Created by Ty Goddard (@ty_goddard) of the Education Foundation and EdtechUK, with support from higher education ICT organisation Jisc, it was a "celebration of the people, products and projects shaping this dynamic and growing sector".

Seppo teachers

Sal McKeown taps into the power of creating games at the Education Show 
Putting gaming at the heart of teaching is the mission of a Finnish company called Seppo. Before moving into software development its chief executive, Riku Alkio, was a history teacher working with young people aged 16 to 19 in Helsinki where he discovered that young people would work harder and learn more when they were engaged in creating games.

I met Riku and his colleague Henrietta Lehtonen at the Education Show at Birmingham's NEC where they were presenting with Apple distinguished educator Lisa Whittaker from the Junior Boys' Division of Bolton School.

Bafta games comp 17

BAFTA's Young Game Designers competition has opened. Anna Pedroza reports

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) has opened its 2018 BAFTA Young Game Designers (YGD) competition for entries. The event aims to inspire the UK’s game creators of the future by giving young people the chance to design and make their own games.

Entrants can submit their work at http://ygd.bafta.org/ until Wednesday April 25, and the host of prizes includes games, hardware, software licences, tours of games studios and 12 months support from industry professionals to develop their game ideas.


Sal Mckeown discovers a new app designed to support troubled students

According to the Mental Health Foundation, the UK has the highest number of people self-harming in Europe — 10 per cent of young people, equivalent to around two in every secondary classroom. Maybe even more as many of them do not tell others.

Now doctors and psychologists, together with young adults and experts, have created a new free app — distrACT — to help young people who self-harm or feel suicidal.